The Coca Cola Slope Soaker is just one of many events to celebrate another successful winter season at Fernie Apline Resort this weekend.

Farewell to winter at Fernie Alpine Resort

Fernie Alpine Resort (FAR) will be hosting the Fernival, the Powder, Pedal, Paddle and the Slope Soaker to celebrate another season.

Fernie Alpine Resort (FAR) will be hosting the Fernival, the Powder, Pedal, Paddle and the Slope Soaker to celebrate  after another great season.

The Fernival will take place on Apr. 9 and is the end of season party that features live music according to FAR’s Events Coordinator, Jeni Pearson. The all-ages event is free and will take place at the resorts plaza.

“Fernival is our season ending party.  It’s a way to celebrate the winter and thank the community for another great season,” she said.

This year’s headlining band is the Canadian rock-pop powerhouse, Platinum Blonde who started making music over three decades ago.

“We try and find bands that appeal to a wide audience and the rock genre seems to work well for that.  We try and find Canadian bands that will excite the crowds and put on a great season ending show and we think Platinum Blonde is a great choice for this year,” said Pearson.

Also on Apr. 9 is the Powder, Pedal, Paddle relay race.

“The Raging Elk Powder, Pedal, Paddle is our season ending multi-sport race.  It’s a great community event that has been going strong since 1984,” she said. “Participants can do the race solo or in teams of two to five people and compete in four disciplines – ski, bike, paddle and run.”

The multi-discipline event covers a large area, going from FAR to Fernie and back.

“The event takes place up at the resort to town and back.  Skiers start at the top of the Bear Chair and ski down Cedar Bowl to base. Once at the base they transition to bikes and ride from the ski hill into town and down to the Elk River,” Pearson said. “There they transition to canoes and kayaks and paddle down the Elk River to the bottom of Ski Hill road where the final transition takes place to a run up Ski Hill road to the finish line in the main plaza.  Full course details available on our website,” said Pearson.

With six categories there are some highly competitive prizes for the Men’s Solo, Women’s Solo, Men’s Team, Women’s Team, Mixed Team and Family/Youth Team categories.

“We recognize the top three finishers in each category.  Fastest team overall also takes home the coveted PPP Trophy.  On top of the placing prizes we also give out fun prizes to teams for things like best costume, and best team spirit,” she said.

According to Pearson, the costumes are a staple of the race, and there have been many memorable appearances.

“There are some great ones every year.  In the past we’ve seen teams of Minions, Ninja Turtles, Animals, Alice in Wonderland and more,” she said.

The event gets more than a hundred participants most years.

“In a typical year we see 130 to 150 people come out on approximately 30 to 35 different teams.  The race is open to anyone 12 years of age and older,” she said.

On Apr. 10, the resort embraces spring with the Coca-Cola Slope Soaker, where the participants will do their best to skim across an 80-foot long splash pond. The events caps at 75 entries and usually meets the limit every year.

“The Slope Soaker pond is easily accessible as it is located at the bottom of the Mighty Moose Slope. What makes it great for spectators is that it is super fun to watch,” said Pearson. “Everyone loves seeing if people are going to make it across the pond or crash, plus the costumes are pretty entertaining.”

Pearson says there is some pretty serious sportsmanship at the Slope Soaker and judges have a strict four criteria judging score – How far/well the contestant goes across the pond, their costume and creativity, the crowd’s reaction, and the contestant’s showmanship.

“Based off the criteria the judges choose the best overall.  We also give prizes for best costume, crowd favourite etc.  and then we do a bunch of draw prizes so everyone has a chance to win,” she said.

Pearson reported it was a good season overall for FAR.

“We’ve been able to host all the events on our calendar which included old favourites like the Raging Elk Dummy Downhill and our Jeep Jr Freeski event plus some exciting new events like the Monster Energy Boarderstyle a few weeks ago,” she said.

The summer will also bring some great activities and events to FAR and the resort hopes to have another amazing summer season.

“Summer is looking great for events with the Scott Thursday Night Race Series coming back and we are excited to once again host the Legendary Summer BC Cup Downhill race in August,” Pearson said. “Family favourites are also returning like the Griz Kidz Summer Carnival and our Kidz Howl at The Moon Campouts. Plus look for a few new fun events and camps being added – details will be released shortly.”